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Thread: I need help on why my breakers on my Ballisticast mark 2 keep tripping.

  1. #1
    Boolit Buddy
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    I need help on why my breakers on my Ballisticast mark 2 keep tripping.

    I have a older mark 2 that the breakers want to trip off and on. It's very speractic and it isnt at no set time. I will be casting then the breaker will trip and I'll have to stop the machine and let it reset after 1-2 min. Sometimes it won't trip at all and other times it still do it 3 times.
    I have a magma pot on it. So is the anything I need to test or look at to see if it's pulling more current then it should?

  2. #2
    Boolit Master
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    Breakers, like most things, aren't created equal and don't live forever. Not familiar with your equipment but if the breaker is easily replaced you might want to replace them if you can't find the problem elsewhere in the system.

  3. #3
    Boolit Buddy
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    I did replace them and they still trip. I'm hoping I can find some help in here to solve the problem.

  4. #4
    Boolit Grand Master GhostHawk's Avatar
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    I'd be looking for a heavier duty circuit you could plug them into.

    While it is possible for a breaker to get "weak" over time. In my experience it happens when it is right on the edge of what that circuit can handle. Ie toaster oven might pop a 20 amp breaker one time in 4 but won't ever pop a 30 amp breaker.

    So take a long close look at how much power it needs and what you are feeding it with. Heavy duty extention cord to a 30 amp circuit if one is available is where I would start.

  5. #5
    Boolit Buddy
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    One of several things could be going on. First off you need to determine if the breakers are tripping for a good reason, or if they are failing. I am much more familiar with electricity than I am with the Ballistacast. The first thing you do is unplug the Ballistacast. Open the electrical section and check the electrical connections for loose or burned wires. Loose wires on breakers can cause the breaker to overheat and nuisance trip. While you are in there look for degraded insulation on any of the wires. If there are any wires or connections in there that need replacing, you will need to get the correct replacement wire / connectors. For these you will likely need to go to a store that sells parts for appliances. They have the high temperature wire and connectors you may need. If you do have failed wires or connectors, cut off a piece of wire or the connector to bring with you to get the proper replacement. If all looks good in there, find a friend that is an electrician, air conditioning, or refrigeration technician. They will have a tool called an ampmeter. This tool measures how much electricity is flowing through a wire. With this tool it can be determined if the breakers are getting worn. Your friend is not likely to loan you the ampmeter as it is an expensive tool and takes a certain amount of knowledge to operate. Good luck.

  6. #6
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    Preacher Jim's Avatar
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    You may have a lose connection some where or a wire that moves may have broken enough strands to create higher amps. Most problems can be traced to connection that needs tightened. If you have replaced breakers then check all connections.

  7. #7
    Boolit Master
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    Jeffry& GhostHawk give sound advice. Clean all the contacts as well. Your heating element might also be going bad and creating too high of a resistance. Check all your values with an ohm meter.
    Last edited by NyFirefighter357; 09-29-2019 at 10:10 AM.

  8. #8
    Boolit Buddy
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    How do I check the heating elements? Both breakers have been tripping. One is for the pot and the other are for the P.ID. I believe. When the one trips the P.I.D will go blank. If the other trips the pots cool down.

  9. #9
    Boolit Buddy
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    Yesterday as I was adding ingots to the pot is when it seemed to happen the most. So maybe its pulling to much power to the pot and breaking the breakers? Sometimes it's when I turn on the machine they trip also.

  10. #10
    Boolit Master
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    This is for a stove but it's the same idea. http://www.acmehowto.com/howto/appli...ng-element.php

    Formula for Resistance(OHMS)=Rated voltage x 2 divided element wattage rating. = or- 2%

    120 x 120 = 14,400
    Element wattage 750? 14,400/750=19.2

    220x 220 = 48,400/750=64.5
    Last edited by NyFirefighter357; 09-29-2019 at 01:34 PM.

  11. #11
    Boolit Mold
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    As far as using an ampmeter to check it out...they have some fairly inexpensive ones you can get from home depot. They are the clamp on type. Just clamp the thing onto the power cable when its turned on and see how much current its pulling.

    https://www.homedepot.com/p/Klein-To...L210/207144572

    I use this exact meter as my cheap travel meter when Im out on the road and when comparing it to the expensive Fluke remote 3-phase ampmeter set I have the readings were all within .1A

  12. #12
    Boolit Master

    Rattlesnake Charlie's Avatar
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    Since you've replaced the breaker, and it didn't do this previously, you have a problem with your pot. While unplugged (duh), open the electrical controls section and make sure all connections are tight. If it continues, you probably need a new pot. Something is either arcing or shorting, and that causes an increase in current that pops the breaker.

  13. #13
    Boolit Buddy
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    I ran it 3 hours strait yesterday and it didnt have one problem. The breaker was 15 AMP before as they tripped all the time so I went up to 20 AMP. It's a off and on thing with the machine. Some days its 3 times it will trip and other days its very little.

  14. #14
    I Googled your machine and these are the specs I found. It appears you should be running a 30 amp breaker:

    Mark II Specs

    Drive

    1. Rack and pinion; eliminates stress on motor mounts

    2. Gear motor

    3. Easy access to the drive system

    4. Pour control air cylinder 40 psi

    Electrical – 240volt AC 30 amp

    1. Two heavy – duty shaded pole blowers

    2. NEMA type 1 enclosure

    3. Digital PID temperature controlled

    4. Electronic counter

    Furnace

    1. 2600 watt heating and two 150 watt elements

    2. Digital control

    3. Capacity: 100 lb. alloy

  15. #15
    Boolit Buddy MaLar's Avatar
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    Do you have Arc fault breakers?
    My AC would kick the breakers every time I turned it on.
    The AC and the Arc fault breakers didn't play well with each other.
    Had the Electrician change them and all is well.
    Call your Electrician and ask them.
    Do not confuse my being polite for weakness.
    Using MXlinux 18.3

  16. #16
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by TonyN View Post
    I ran it 3 hours strait yesterday and it didnt have one problem. The breaker was 15 AMP before as they tripped all the time so I went up to 20 AMP. It's a off and on thing with the machine. Some days its 3 times it will trip and other days its very little.
    Let me see if I understand. You had a 15 amp circuit and it tripped too often, so you changed the circuit breaker to 20 amp?

  17. #17
    Boolit Mold
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    According to NineInchNails, you're looking at a furnace that uses 14 AMPS. If you're running it through 20A breakers it should be fine, but a 30A feed would be preferred in my house. That's 10AWG wire to a 30A outlet or disconnect, dedicated, and no extension cords.

    I'm not familiar with the furnace. The clamp on ammeter is the best option. Measuring the resistance of the heating element can be meaningful, but also measure the resistance from the element leads to the case of the element. You can have a perfectly good heating element that's shorted to the case it's contained in. As the element heats and cools it moves around and may end up shorting to the case, and the case is almost certainly connected to safety ground.

    Another thought is the PID. Heating elements take a second or two to heat up. During that time, the element draws significantly more current (maybe that's why the specs call for 30A) than it does once it's hot (14A). Most PIDs drive an SSR, flipping the power to the heating element on/off with its program. If it's programmed for control on a second-by-second basis, it can be terribly inefficient and increase the current demand. You could be switching that startup current (30A ?) like a toddler with a new-found light switch. The breaker isn't going to stand for that. Make sure your PID isn't switching too quickly. I would assume you shouldn't see it turn on or off for less than maybe 30 seconds, maybe even a minute or two. You need that hysteresis for the breaker to recover/cool from the rush of current when the load first turns on.

  18. #18
    Boolit Master
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    Please read post #13. I see no mention of increasing the wire size. 14awg is good enough for 15 amps but over the long haul at 14 amps that the pot is pulling the wire is gonna become brittle and start tripping the breaker. For long term use the 15 amp circuit should be run at 12 amps. Sticking a 20 amp breaker on 15 amp wire is asking for trouble especially on a heating element that slowly starts drawing a bit more current as it warms up the circuit. I see this happen all the time with commercial appliances that run for 10-12 hours straight.

    Simple test I use is to grab the wire after it's been running a while. If it's warm, then the circuit is inadequate. If you don't supply adequate power then the appliance burns out before it's time.
    Last edited by jsizemore; 10-01-2019 at 04:56 PM.

  19. #19
    Boolit Buddy
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    Two things, 1 if you are going to run a 30A circuit make sure you have 10ga. wire running from the breaker panel in your house/shop to your outlet and have the correct plug to handle the current. 2 if you use a clip on amp meter only grab one wire at a time. If you grab a pair and one of them is the return line it will read 0 amps.

  20. #20
    Boolit Master
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    I have some confusion.
    Can you describe your setup in more detail.

    What are the breakers you are talking about and have replaced?

    Household breakers in a main breaker box?

    Or circuit breakers on the unit itself?

    Pot and pid on different breakers?

    Wouldn’t the pot be plugged into the pid?

    So starting at the wall outlet where the system is plugged in what is the wiring path?

    And i would also vote for a bad connection somewhere, but it will take a better understanding of your system to narrow it down.

    Lastly there is concern in that you uprated a breaker but not the wiring.
    A big no no and a great way to burn your house down if the wiring cannot handle it.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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